History Book Reviews

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 20, 2016

"A fresh, captivating history of the enduringly colorful Churchill."
A history of the danger-seeking young Winston Churchill during the Boer War, which "had turned out to be far more difficult and more devastating than the amusing colonial war the British had expected." Read full book review >
BLOOD AT THE ROOT by Patrick Phillips
HISTORY
Released: Sept. 20, 2016

"An impressive reckoning with a shameful piece of the past that 'most natives of Forsyth would prefer to leave…scattered in the state's dusty archives or safely hidden in plain sight.'"
A history of white supremacy's endurance in a Georgia county. Read full book review >

EYES ON THE STREET by Robert Kanigel
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 20, 2016

"An outstanding chronicle of a provocative, influential, iconoclastic theorist of the American cityscape."
A significant, comprehensive biography of an irrepressible urbanist, author, and pioneering community activist. Read full book review >
MOSCOW NIGHTS by Nigel Cliff
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 20, 2016

"Sweeping history combines with a sensitive rendering of Cliburn's extraordinary passion."
The glorious career of the Texan pianist who captured Russian hearts during the Cold War era. Read full book review >
SOMME by Hugh Sebag-Montefiore
HISTORY
Released: Sept. 19, 2016

"A beautifully crafted, blow-by-blow account with deep insight into the lives of these diverse young men."
A painstaking chronological account of the hideously marred attack on the German entrenchments at the Somme, July-September 1916. Read full book review >

GIRL by Alona Frankel
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 12, 2016

"A truly moving and bravely rendered memoir."
An impressionistic memoir of a Polish Jewish girl's survival hiding as a Gentile in Nazi-occupied Poland. Read full book review >
AMERICAN REVOLUTIONS by Alan Taylor
HISTORY
Released: Sept. 6, 2016

"Beautifully organized and accessibly presented history for all readers."
A clear, authoritative, well-organized look at the messy Colonial march toward revolution and self-rule. Read full book review >
JOHN AUBREY, MY OWN LIFE by Ruth Scurr
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 6, 2016

"A creative, engaging, and profoundly moving account of a man's fierce desire to discover, understand, and preserve."
A historian and literary critic offers a unique and revealing look at the life of English philosopher John Aubrey (1626-1697), told in Aubrey's voice in the form of a diary. Read full book review >
THE SIX by Laura Thompson
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 6, 2016

"Thompson has fallen under the spell of the breathtakingly beautiful (as she repeatedly insists), seductive Diana, but otherwise, her cleareyed view of the sisters' strengths and foibles makes this gossipy story a delight."
A fresh look at six outrageous sisters. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 6, 2016

"A marvelous portrait of a professional woman ahead of her time whose relationship with FDR sheds new light on his personality and decisions."
Franklin Roosevelt's longtime loyal personal secretary earns a much-needed, balanced portrait. Read full book review >
CHASING PORTRAITS by Elizabeth Rynecki
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 6, 2016

"A wonderful story beautifully told. Rynecki's yearslong search, successes, frustrations, and failures are a study in perseverance."
A page-turning personal history of Rynecki's search for her great-grandfather's legacy. Read full book review >
HIS FINAL BATTLE by Joseph Lelyveld
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 6, 2016

"An elegant, affecting work that offers fresh insights on a much-mythologized president."
Eloquently exposing the open secret of Franklin Roosevelt's advanced heart disease. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Jeff Chang
September 20, 2016

In the provocative essays in journalist Jeff Chang’s new book We Gon’ Be Alright, Chang takes an incisive and wide-ranging look at the recent tragedies and widespread protests that have shaken the country. Through deep reporting with key activists and thinkers, personal writing, and cultural criticism, We Gon’ Be Alright links #BlackLivesMatter to #OscarsSoWhite, Ferguson to Washington D.C., the Great Migration to resurgent nativism. Chang explores the rise and fall of the idea of “diversity,” the roots of student protest, changing ideas about Asian Americanness, and the impact of a century of racial separation in housing. “He implores readers to listen, act, and become involved with today’s activists, who offer ‘new ways to see our past and our present,’ ” our reviewer writes in a starred review. “A compelling and intellectually thought-provoking exploration of the quagmire of race relations.” View video >